Casimir Pulaski, Father of the American Cavalry
POLISH AMERICAN CONGRESS MARKS NEW YORK’S FORGOTTEN PULASKI DAY
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Brooklyn, N.Y. .. With all attention centered on their annual October Pulaski Parade, most Polish Americans in New York overlooked their state’s March 4th Pulaski Day, General
It went on the books more than twenty years ago and has been neglected ever since.
The Downstate N.Y. Division of the Polish American Congress resolved to correct the oversight and asked the Senate of New York observing the holiday.
A Senate proclamation was issued through Sen. Frank Padavan whose district includes the Floral Park, Bellerose, Bayside, Little Neck and Whitestone areas of New York City’s Queens County.
Poland’s Casimir Pulaski joined Gen. George Washington in the War for America’s Independence in 1777 and became known as the “Father of the American Cavalry.”
The first Pulaski Day in New York State became official in 1988 during the time Mario Cuomo, a good friend of Polish Americans, was governor.
During the 1980’s when Poland’s first free trade union Solidarity was challenging the Communist system forced on Poland, Polish Americans repeatedly held protest demonstrations to support Lech Walesa and the striking workers he led.
Gov. Cuomo or his representatives always responded to Polish American Congress invitations to participate with the Congress in the New York rallies.
In 1929, the Congress of the United States designated October 11th as the national Pulaski Day to be annually observed by presidential proclamations. It also authorized the Post Office to issue a Pulaski commemorative stamp.
In 1973, the State of Illinois designated the first Monday in March as its “Pulaski Commemorative Day.”
Today, Gen. Pulaski’s contributions to the success of America’s War of Independence are remembered by the many cities, towns and counties in the U.S. which bear his name.
In the Polish American community, fast growing organizations like the Pulaski Cadets preserve and carry on his distinguished legacy.